When The Princess Bride hit cinemas in 1987, few could have imagined that it would become the cult classic that it is today.
The story-within-a-story features high adventure, tender moments, and dialogue that's brimming with quotable moments—indeed, plenty of enduring quotes that befit this classic movie.
What are the best quotes from The Princess Bride? And what makes them so great, so quotable, so memorable? Here are our favorites that we'll remember for many years yet.
4. "Have Fun Stormin' the Castle"
Said by Miracle Max to Inigo Montoya and Fezzik.
Inigo and Fezzik bring the presumed dead—but actually just mostly dead—Westley to Miracle Max. After some convincing from his wife, along with the promise that Humperdinck will suffer, Max agrees to perform a miracle and bring Westley back to the land of the living.
As the pair leave with their unconscious companion, Miracle Max and his wife offer a casual goodbye to them:
"Have fun stormin' the castle."
No other line in The Princess Bride sums up the understated humor of the script better than this one, especially with its delivery by Billy Crystal. Mandy Patinkin even bruised his rib during this scene because Crystal kept making him laugh so hard.
While this might not be the most dramatic or emotional line in the film, it embodies the clever writing and perfect delivery that have made it a cult classic more than thirty years later.
3. "I'm Not Left-Handed Either"
Said by The Man in Black to Inigo Montoya.
This is the most dramatic moment in one of the best movie swordfights in the history of cinema.
Inigo, who admits that he won't be satisfied with the fight unless he gives himself a handicap at the start, soon finds that The Man in Black is more than his equal. This forces Inigo to switch back to his right hand in order to overcome his opponent's skill.
That advantage is undone only a moment later when The Man in Black, pressed against the rocky wall atop the Cliffs of Insanity, gives Inigo another stunning realization:
"I'm not left-handed either."
Keen-eyed viewers will have noticed that everything leading to this moment depicted The Man in Black as indeed left-handed. He wears his sword on his right side and even grips Inigo's hilt with his left hand, showing how much he relies on trickery and confusion to win fights.
Which makes this moment that much more exciting. These two greatest swordfighters in the world are using the full extent of their abilities in the most dramatic swordfight in cinema.
2. "Drop. Your. Sword."
Said by Westley to Prince Humperdinck.
Here we have the climatic encounter of the film. Westley, still recovering from being brought back from the mostly-dead thanks to Miracle Max, lies in the bed where Prince Humperdinck plans to murder Buttercup on their wedding night.
After describing in painful detail the torment he intends to inflict upon the Prince, Humperdinck claims that Westley is bluffing—which Westley agrees is a possibility, all before he slowly stands and gives Humperdinck a simple command:
"Drop. Your. Sword."
Most films pit the hero and villain against each other in physical combat, but Westley has proven to be more than a match for even the greatest swordfighters in the world.
Instead, it's with a simple bluff and intimidation that he disarms his enemy, utilizing the trickery that he displayed in his fight against Inigo at the Cliffs of Insanity.
It's a novel and emotionally satisfying end to Humperdinck's story. He's undone by his own cowardice rather than being physically overcome, and we love to see it.
1. "I Want My Father Back"
Said by Inigo Montoya to Count Rugen.
This confrontation is one we all knew was coming the moment Inigo explained his desire for revenge to Westley at the Cliffs of Insanity. The swordsman had trained his whole life for this moment when he could look the man who killed his father in the eye.
Gravely wounded and limping forward, Inigo summons the strength to disarm Count Rugen—the famous six-fingered man—and has him pressed. Rugen promises Inigo whatever he could want if he just spares his life, to which Inigo responds with:
"I want my father back, you son of a bitch."
The backstory to this line is just as emotional as it appears on screen. Mandy Patinkin (the actor who portrays Inigo) had recently lost his father to cancer before filming started, and imagined that it was the cancer he was exacting vengeance upon.
With that powerful emotion fueling his performance, it isn't surprising that this is a moment that always brings a tear to our eyes. That makes it the number one most quotable moment of this highly quotable film.